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Headstart Herald Easter Newsletter

by Headstart School in Life at Headstart, Newsletters Comments: 0 tags: Newsletters

The Easter edition of our Headstart Herald Newsletter.

Exam Results

Headstart School rejoices in exam results August 2014.

Our two students who sat GCSE’s this year celebrated outstanding successes with their GCSE results on Thursday 21 August. One student remained with the school an additional year to re-sit GCSE’s – English D, Maths C – both improved by 2 GCSE grades in one year. Our other student obtained English D and Maths F – this exceeded expectation giving us 100% pass rate.

A number of students from Year 9 upwards were successful with entry level qualifications where they were assessed through a combination of coursework, controlled assessment and examinations, depending on the qualification. We are delighted to announce that three students achieved Entry Level 3 Maths (the highest award for this suite of qualifications), two students achieved Entry Level 2 in Maths with a further student gaining an Entry Level 2 in Science.

We congratulate staff and students who have worked so hard and their successes are well deserved. Headstart School continues to go from strength to strength and we are so pleased that our achievements have been rewarded.





Reflections on 2013 – 2014

Choosing the school at which our children are to be educated is one of the most important decisions we make. One of our strengths is that we are a small school and as a result we are able to offer a high level of care and individual support for every student in a close ‘family’ atmosphere. Our aim is to ensure that each individual student is given every opportunity to reach their full potential. We pride ourselves in offering high quality education in a productive and caring environment. A firm foundation for our success is the good relationship between the school, parents and partners in the local community.

This year we were visited by Ofsted Inspectors who spent two days examining all aspects of school life. We were incredibly pleased with the extremely positive report we received under the new inspection framework which graded us as good in all sections and a good school overall. There were so many fantastic comments about all aspects of our school and I was very pleased that many of them linked directly to our school vision and values. However, despite this report we are not complacent and we will continue to look for ways to improve our school and build on the broad education we offer to all students.

This year has seen a number of changes to staffing, school structure, assessment and curriculum. We realise that the school has been driving forward to raise standards however feel that at the very heart of our beliefs are wishing to raise life chances and aspirations of all young people. In doing so throughout the holidays we are converting an area of the school into a therapy base with a sensory room, soft play room and sensory circuits room, additionally there will be a reading corner where Lennon (the dog) will be based. Works are currently underway in the bottom field to secure areas for chicken, ducks, small animals such as rabbits/guinea pigs etc. Also, lambing pens, holding bays and much more. We have developed the primary, key stage 3, 4 and ASDCN areas throughout the year with more developments planned for the holidays such as soft lighting in the blue rooms. The construction workshop has been resited and is developing. Hopefully you will have all received information regarding the use of Lexia and Symphony and encourage students to use these programmes across the summer to further develop their literacy and numeracy skills.

Stages in Chick Embryo Development

by Headstart School in Life at Headstart Comments: 0

One of the greatest miracles of nature is the transformation of the egg into the chick. A chick emerges after a brief three weeks of incubation. The complexity of the development cannot be understood without training in embryology.





When the egg is laid, some embryonic development has occurred and usually stops until proper cell environmental conditions are established for incubation to resume. At first, all the cells are alike, but as the embryo develops, cell differences are observed. Some cells may become vital organs; others become a wing or leg.


Soon after incubation begins, a pointed thickened layer of cells becomes visible in the caudal or tail end of the embryo. This pointed area is the primitive streak, and is the longitudinal axis of the embryo. From the primitive streak, the head and backbone of the embryo develop. A precursor of the digestive tract forms; blood islands appear and will develop later into the vascular or blood system; and the eye begins.


On the second day of incubation, the blood islands begin linking and form a vascular system, while the heart is being formed elsewhere.


By the 44th hour of incubation, the heart and vascular systems join, and the heart begins beating. Two distinct circulatory systems are established, an embryonic system for the embryo and a vitelline system extending into the egg.


At the end of the third day of incubation, the beak begins developing and limb buds for the wings and legs are seen. Torsion and flexion continue through the fourth day. The chick’s entire body turns 90o and lies down with its left side on the yolk. The head and tail come close together so the embryo forms a “C” shape. The mouth, tongue, and nasal pits develop as parts of the digestive and respiratory systems. The heart continues to enlarge even though it has not been enclosed within the body. It is seen beating if the egg is opened carefully. The other internal organs continue to develop. By the end of the fourth day of incubation, the embryo has all organs needed to sustain life after hatching, and most of the embryo’s parts can be identified. The chick embryo cannot, however, be distinguished from that of mammals.


The embryo grows and develops rapidly. By the seventh day, digits appear on the wings and feet, the heart is completely enclosed in the thoracic cavity, and the embryo looks more like a bird. After the tenth day of incubation, feathers and feather tracts are visible, and the beak hardens. On the fourteenth day, the claws are forming and the embryo is moving into position for hatching. After twenty days, the chick is in the hatching position, the beak has pierced the air cell, and pulmonary respiration has begun.


After 21 days of incubation, the chick finally begins its escape from the shell. The chick begins by pushing its beak through the air cell. The allantois, which has served as its lungs, begins to dry up as the chick uses its own lungs. The chick continues to push its head outward. The sharp horny structure on the upper beak (egg tooth) and the muscle on the back of the neck help cut the shell. The chick rests, changes position, and keeps cutting until its head falls free of the opened shell. It then kicks free of the bottom portion of the shell. The chick is exhausted and rests while the navel openings heal and its down dries. Gradually, it regains strength and walks. The incubation and hatching is complete. The horny cap will fall off the beak within days after the chick hatches.


End of Year Speeches

Key Stage 2 student of the year: This key stage 2 student has made superb progress across this academic year in so many different ways from caring for others to raising achievement and sharing her knowledge of animals to her peers. This student has shown excellent leadership qualities and has been a positive influence on other class members through assisting them in their work. We are so proud of her and are delighted to announce the winner of the Key stage 2 student of the year goes to Annette Lees.


Key Stage 3 student of the year: This key stage 3 student is always enthusiastic to try out new learning experiences be this in the classroom or outside in the wider community. This student has shown a greater confidence in himself which has translated positively to his interactions and communication with both adults and students including actively being involved in role play even adopting female roles – therefore key stage 3 student of the year goes to Louie Penfold.


Key Stage 4 student of the year: This key stage 4 student has made significant progress across this academic year being entered for a range of exams that he felt would never be possible. We have seen him develop into an articulate young man who is ready for his move into college life, therefore key stage 4 student of the year is David Nicol.


Key Stage 5 student of the year: This key stage 5 student has always been willing to participate in practical activities and has been an asset on the farm. It is good to see that this student is returning in September and currently will be the only student to be studying a level 2 course in Construction. Therefore key stage 5 student of the year is Josh Pope.


ASDCN student of the year: This student has been a very mature member of his group, is a conscientious learner and has shown a greater degree of independence around the school and with his learning which is pleasing to see. Therefore ASDCN student of the year is Jaydon Towers.


Most progress Made: Two students have been chosen for their excellent progress in many ways throughout this academic year. The first student is always enthusiastic to try out new learning experiences and is an active participant in classroom discussion. This student has shown a greater confidence in herself and this has translated positively to her interactions and communication with both adults and students. This student should feel very proud of her social and learning achievements – therefore the first student who has made excellent progress is Holly Owens.

The second student has made significant progress both socially and academically, he has overcome many personal challenges and is now able to work with a range of staff and students, he has tried beyond measure to make progress and has achieved this – therefore this student is Ewan Massoon.


Sports person of the year: This student has developed in leaps and bounds in all areas of sport. This student is able to take a lead role within his team and offers support to team members. His student has played in matches against other schools and is an asset to sports at Headstart School including being this year’s table tennis champion – this student is Bill Treeby.


Artist of the year: This student always arrives at her lesson with lots of enthusiasm and bundles of ideas. This student is very creative and likes to develop her own independent original ideas. She has a keen eye for detail and often creates work which is highly detailed and sometimes complicated in design. This student is Holly Owens.


Head teacher’s Award: Headstart School has seen this student change from a quiet, shy student into a more confident and determined young man. He has conducted himself impeccably throughout his time at Headstart. This student was so determined to be successful that he decided to stay at headstart for an additional year to resit English and Maths and to sit an AS level in Art. Therefore we are very proud to announce that the headteachers award is presented to David Stallwood.


Teacher of the Year: This member of staff is a highly valued and totally committed member of the staff team. This teacher holds high expectations of all students and believes that each and every student can reach for the stars. This teacher seeks ways to give students a real world application for knowledge remaining sensitive to the needs of others including parents and colleagues. This is by no means easy as each student has very different needs however this teacher plays out a multitude of different roles throughout the day with fluidity and grace. This member of staff has strong core principles however has evolved with changing times. The most effective educators bring their entire selves to the job, celebrate student successes, show compassion, laugh at their mistakes, share their unique ways and aren’t afraid to be human and as importantly treat students with respect – this analogy is totally fitting for our teacher of the year: Lorraine Colegate.

Forest School – Twig Towers at Bedgebury Forest

As part of the forest school program students have been using artists such as Andy Goldsworthy as inspiration to be creative and produce their own interpretation of sculpture in a forest landscape.  Students were asked to incorporate part of the living forest as their sculpture.  As you can see, some fantastic results.

Twig tower 1Twig tower 2Twig tower 3

Weekly House Challenge

Every week the three houses of Headstart School come together in a unique challenge. Students have to pit their wits against each other in a variety of different tasks.  Students work together achieving a common goal to complete each challenge.  During the challenge, leadership skills, cooperation and social interaction are all developed, as well as being lots of fun for everyone.

Challenges during the winter were based indoors with lots of different themes from team building activities to sport. During the spring and summer more challenges are based outside and use the school farm and garden as inspiration.

Weekly House Challenge 1


House challenge on Friday 25th April was potato planting, each house had 12 potatoes to plant.


Weekly House Challenge 2

World Book Day

What is World Book Day?

World Book Day is a celebration! It’s a celebration of authors, illustrators, books and (most importantly) it’s a celebration of reading.

This year Headstart School promoted World Book Day in a range of exciting and innovative ways such as:

Drop Everything And  Read – an allocated time during the day whereupon every member of the school community stopped what they were doing to read for ten minutes.

Book Characters – many staff dressed as book characters ranging from Matilda to Just William.

Ten Word Stories – all students and many staff joined in the ten word story session where students could